Meat Loaf is suing Meat Loaf tribute act ‘To Hell And Back’ for $100,000 (£64,000).
‘To Hell And Back’, which consists of UK-based singer Dean Torkington, is facing the lawsuit from the Texan singer’s lawyers, who accuse him of being a “cybersquatter” and “online imposter” over his use of the website Meatloaf.org.
According to the lawsuit, Meat Loaf, whose real name is Michael Aday, claims that Torkington has ”commercially exploited the internet top-level domain name MeatLoaf.org to capitalise on the artist’s celebrity”. It then claims that Torkington is ”liable for substantial damages, including statutory damages of up to $100,000 for cybersquatting”.
Speaking to the Daily Mail about the lawsuit, Torkington said: “Earlier this month I received a copy of the lawsuit posted to my home and emailed. I have every intention of defending this to protect my good name and will not be bullied in this way. I really don’t see what his gripe is or legally where he is coming from, I am not guilty of cybersquatting or passing myself off as him.”
This is actually the second time that Torkington has incurred the wrath of the ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ singer. He revealed that in 2003, Meat Loaf dragged him backstage at his concert in Liverpool and told him to get rid of his van, which has the ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ album artwork on the side. Torkington also says he has offered to sell the website name for £8,000, but has only been offered £1,300.
Asked why he took up impersonating Meat Loaf in the first place, Torkington said: “I have been a Meat Loaf tribute performer since 1996. I used to be an Elton John performer before that but put on quite a bit of weight so decided to become Meat Loaf. I would emulate him as best I could. I have a full stage set with a motorbike and a big picture of the album cover Bat Out Of Hell 2 at the back.”
Torkington added though that this latest spat with Meat Loaf has forced him to go back and start impersonating Elton John again. He added: “I’ve gone back to doing Elton John tribute acts more now as a result of all this. It’s less hassle than being a Meat Loaf tribute act any day.”
He continued: “I have taken this show all over the country and promoted him well in all these years. I have done charity gigs too. But when the person that you are portraying is making your life hell it makes you question whether you still want to be like them.”
You can watch Torkington in action as Meat Loaf below: